29 April 2009

Days of being Hospitable

I was awakened this morning by the cries of a 17yr old boy who is mentally disabled. My mom does therapeutic foster care, and as I still live at home, sometimes this is how I am awakened. Sometimes the children she takes in have anger issues, abandonment issues, mental issues, medical issues, and sometimes none or all of these problems. My parents began this vocation when I was in first grade. After giving birth to my sister and I; Mom, (with Dad's full support) decided to open her home to others, citing James 1:27 as her reasoning. It goes like this: Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

I love that Dad and Mom do this. Because of their faith in Jesus Christ, and the love of children God placed in Mom and Dad's hearts, they have taken in 8 girls and just as many boys over the last 16 years. Usually each child lives with us for two years, and either age out of the system, go to live with their relatives, or (in the worst of cases) go to a residential facility. In my life, this has taught me how to be hospitable, selfless, considerate, and patient. Most certainly patient.

My father keeps telling my mother to tell me stories of what she has learned about child-rearing from each kid, and for me to transcribe this into a book of memoirs. He says that it will be a best-seller and will encourage other Americans to be courageous and to open their homes to wards of the state. I smile and think, that is not the type of writing I am used to, but I know it will help other therapeutic foster parents to be encouraged and to keep up the good work. So, when my mom is really, I have a pen and paper at the ready!

I love what my parents do. There are rare moments though when I don't always feel comfortable living at such an open home. The biggest problem I've had over the years has been with boyfriends. These guys either have a problem with my desire to write for a living or my desire to have a big family. These guys are the ones who want a secluded 3 bdrm house with 1.5 kids and a dog, while I know I want 5 kids (mine or the state's, it makes no difference) and a hospitable house. I don't know if any guys at the local pub, or even the church will want so many kids, especially if some of the gang are not from their loins. But I think I'll keep praying. Only God knows what the future holds. ;)

22 April 2009

A Day of Chuckles

So chapter 3 is done!

It took multiple hours, and a couple of read-throughs, but its great. The tension between the 2 ex-best friends is going well. The reader is finding out a little bit about why they hate each other, but not everything. I finally created minor character-growing problems for the men in the novel too. And like all small towns I’ve ever been too, it seems like everyone who’s married is related to everyone else in town and new people are looked upon as outsiders. I think it’s a little heavy on the dialogue, but it was necessary to the story, so it works.

So I am working on chapter 4 this week and I am not sure where to go. I have a letter from the past, 2 scared children, a pastor in the hospital, another one on the way and a ticked off fiancé. Some how I have to bring all of these characters together for the murder scene in chapter 5.

Anyway in other news: Aggie and I went to Transformed last night. We are used to going to a church that answers the pastor when he asks questions, one where people are encouraged/allowed to say “amen” when they feel the need. So it was funny last night when the decent looking announcer/jock guy was giving the announcements (and Aggie and I were commenting). I didn't think anyone could hear us, but then I think we actually made him nervous. At one point he was going on about how there is going to be this new relationship-focused Bible study on Thursdays, and I groaned, rolled my eyes and leaned my head on my sister’s shoulder. (I am sick of Christian dating books) He actually looked at us and said, “No! It’s not that bad. . .” We are trying not to be such vocal parishioners, but we aren’t doing so well with that. God made us loud, our parents made us opinionated.

Until next week! Keep writing ladies!

15 April 2009

A day of mysteries and haystacks

So yesterday while working out at the Y, I came up with the next chapter of my current story. (Yay me!) And then I proceeded to figure out which character should be my murderer. Because, as you know, in every mystery story the bad guy has to be there from the beginning. I figured out which character would do and it made my day. I just have to write it.

Why didn't I write it when I got home? Well, Aggie and I decided to give away our cats. It was a melancholy day really. And that old R&B song about "every single day. . . I'll be missing you" was playing on the radio when we got to the SPCA. It really made the day kind of literary.

Any way, back to writing. I have this white notebook I write in when I am either plotting, or thinking of new ideas and I am super excited. I just came up with a new Idea for yet another story. It came to me while sleeping. This one will not be part of the mystery series, and all I will say is that in involves liars, haystacks, and makeup. Can't wait to figure that one out huh?

And gals, I am SO looking forward to Writer's Group!

08 April 2009

Day of testimony

So I was writing my testimony down today to send to Pastor M.B. because I'm going to be working at my grandparents church over the summer, and it made me remember why I love Jesus and Easter (i.e. Resurrection Sunday).

I became a Christian during the April 1991 Easter Production at my grandparents church. My family and I were sitting in the left gallery, and during the scene where Jesus carried his cross to Mount Calvary, and then died, I cried. My father, seeing my tears, explained to me that Jesus was also God and he came to take the place of us. You see our wrong doing deserves punishment. Jesus took our place of punishment. My father explained that since Jesus died and then resurrected three days later, we can know him as GOD and as friend. All we needed to do was say to Jesus that we we believed that he had taken our place of punishment, and that we wanted to follow him with our whole heart and be his friend. I thought about this and a little later, I prayed.

Since then I have always tried to share my Lord-friend Jesus with others. I'm not sure I'm always the best at evangelizing, (I mean using Barbies at a Bar-B-Q when I was seven may not have been the best way to tell my friends), however I have always wanted those I care about and love to know Jesus as their Savior-friend. This belief has caused me to lead a Bible study in 9th grade, and go on 4 different mission trips.

Sometime during my teen years, I commited myself to reading through the Bible. I wrote a promise to God inbetween the pages of my New and Old Testaments and 6 years later, I finished. I learned a lot about keeping the promises we make.

Actually, in the last year I have learned a lot about my self. I dedicated most of last year to persuing God and what his will is for my life, and I have learned a lot. God created me with certain interests: i.e I like to write, to travel, to go out on the town, and He has given me certain dreams: i.e. I want to be the house on the block that everyone feels at home in. The place where people can have a cup of tea or a bowl of soup and just relax. An OASIS. A safe place for those around me to figure out who they are, what they are about, and how God fits into all of that.

This past year Isaiah 40, Proverbs 31, Psalm 45, and the book of Luke have been key for me.

And I finally feel like I have direction concerning my career. It was there all a long, I just lacked faith. Look for my teen book on amazon.com next December and my mystery novel out next-next summer. I don't know what the book will be called yet, but I'm working on it, and leaving the rest up to God. He is more than able to do above all that we can ask, or imagine!